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With a desire to build the social capital in the immediate neighborhood (2-3 block radius), and create more of a sense of village atmosphere,we gathered neighbors over simple meals – where it was accessible and easy for all
residents to participate (potlucks can hinder busy people from attending, and families with low income – to not have
any costs incurred). A simple meal (soup/salad/bread) seems less intimidating and sets a tone of equity (not competing for who is a better cook etc). Over 4 months – there were 4 neighborhood shared meals. The final gathering was a progressive dinner – in 3 homes and included a local musician (an amazing banjo player that got the kids dancing and led the procession between homes). We are now continuing with monthly soup nights and building an inventory of identified local skills to share, along with neighborhood improvement ideas. The inventory will promote future networking to work toward the common good. Neighbors who had lived 3 doors down from each other for 10+ years and hadn’t met until our shared meals are now sharing emails – and for some – even house keys! We are on our way to becoming more of a community together in this shared place.